A TOTAL of 21 small and medium sized enterprises in Lancashire have made of use of a series of digital transformation workshops aimed at helping firms grow by embracing and mastering the latest technology.

The workshops are run by Made Smarter, a network aiming to boost economic growth by helping firms take full advantage of various digital tools.

Businesses from East Lancashire to sign up include Tool Management Services of Accrington, Fairbrother and Grimshaw Engineering of Blackburn, Linzi Jay of Blackburn, Woven Art Company of Clitheroe and many more.

Made Smarter technology expert Kevin Smith said: “The use of technologies is becoming essential in order to cut costs and enhance the customer experience.

“Without capitalising on digital tools, manufacturers risk getting left behind.

“A digital transformation workshop will ultimately help a business gain a competitive advantage.

“As advisers we cut through the jargon to provide honest advice to help the business identify the most effective technologies to overcome their operational challenges.

“We take a holistic view of the business, and demonstrate the steps required in order to achieve a move to digital – it’s a quick way of gaining real, valuable insights.

“We have designed these workshops in a way that requires minimal time investment for manufacturers to turn the actions into results, while still allowing participants to focus on the day-to-day operations of the business.”

The digital workshops consist of guides for decision-makers with recommended first steps, a technology roadmap, and information about how to get further support from the programme such as funding for digital tools.

They also include the Made Smarter Leadership Programme delivered in partnership with Lancaster University, that helps firms develop the skills to smarter manufacturing, digital technology internships and specialist advice about workforce development and skills.

Lancashire Telegraph:

Companies can also access funding for new digital tools and technologies such as data and systems integration, robotics and automation, or additive manufacturing through Made Smarter.

Made Smarter North West programme director Donna Edwards said: “Upgrading to new technologies can seem like a complex and daunting task. SMEs can miss out on significant improvements to their operations.

“With a bespoke digital manufacturing roadmap, we are able to provide the manufacturers a vision of how to move forward progressively and sustainably.

“The challenges created by Covid-19 offered us an opportunity to review how we can best help manufacturers ensure digital is a key part of their business strategy and take that first step to digital transformation.”

To find out more about Made Smarter, visit: www.madesmarter.uk/.